introduce my best friend," he told us. We were already there in
his big sitting room; can I use the term room? This was the
shore of a big beach near the Roraing Sea in Rogaland. We had
come to meet Helge Torvund, and he took us to the place where he
sits, reads and writes. This was a cluster of rocks. We sat
there, and read poems while he talked about his efforts to save
this area. Because of his initiative this entire area is called
protected area, where no one can even pluck a blade of grass.
Odvieg, a Norwegian poet and filmmaker who took us to meet him,
had already told us about his work as a critic, a psychologist
and a poet whose poetry is mostly related to the landscape of
Rogaland. She also mentioned that he is one of the most
important poets of Rogaland (Norway).
I was a little surprised to know that Norwegian writers still
liked to write about nature, whereas in our own country it is
considered old fashioned or anti modern. There is no doubt that
Norway is the most beautiful country; if we talk about nature
here, though it can be cruel at times, is remarkable for its
lovely landscape. Before meeting Hegle, I had the impression
that the poets of this area must be still impressed by nature
and were thus writing mostly about nature.
When we went to see his friend a little away from the rocks, we
were astonished to see a tall beautiful tree, who might have
heard us talking.
I am sure that our Indian critics and progressive poets will not
like this idea--they would call it Romanticism. The dirt and
poverty is becoming so powerful that we just ignore the
beautiful aspects of our earth. Slum dog has now become a
world-famous problem, by showing slum dog worldwide, we say Jay
ho - (poverty!) Jay ho - (dirt!); we do not want to talk about
recession as this problem is related to wealth.
Now the question is whether what Helge is writing about or what
he is doing can be classified under modernism or not. While
talking to him I could understand his vision. Not only him, but
also most of the other Norwegian writers and thinkers worry
about the destruction of nature. The extreme climate, the
truism, and ice games are pushing Norway towards global warming
and as a result the glaciers are melting fast and trees are
falling down. A common man of this country cannot survive
without trees, without rivers and without grass fields. So we
can say that the protection of nature is a very important issue
Does it mean that this problem is restricted to a certain area,
or place? Isn't it a global problem?
Does it mean that nature as well as the effort to save nature
and the importance of being friendly to it must necessarily be a
part of the discourses of modernity in literatures?
Nurturing nature does not mean neglecting other human problems.
It is in fact the solution to the problem. Is it not true that
most of the farmers are forced to become labourers and make more
and more slums? Or, isn't it the inability to use nature in the
proper way the main reason behind the increasing suicides among
I just want to quote Helge's poem-
I come back down the green hill
I'm happy as a loaf of fresh bread
I hold my arms out a little from my body
because I want to hug this shining day
In this instant in time I exist
and the trail caresses the soles of my feet
Nothing to do here but walk
Nothing to say here at all
A whole day's body full of light
In step with it under the sky by the river
Friends! This is the time, when we must start focusing our
thoughts on what is right or beneficial for the entire humanity,
in other words, for the entire Universe.
The photos in this issue are those taken in Europe - these
include not only those of Vegaland, a famous park in Oslo, but
also those of some writings and posters on the roadside walls.
This issue again has something new, and we are into our fifth
year, and are extremely thankful to our readers for supporting